Thursday, November 15, 2012

Smoke and Ice

I remember a place one bitterly cold morning in 1989 where smoke and ice hung ghost-like in the winter air. Words like smoke and ice don't often pair up in a sentence, but my memory carries the image of the two coexisting comfortably. Their bonding agent was my dad. He had taken a drag of his Kent Golden Light while snapping an icicle off an ice-encrusted huisache and the translucence of his cigarette smoke melded with the dull shimmer from leafless branches sagging with ice. In the muffled stillness of the morning, smoke and ice hung in the air as if in a dream.

When I step out onto bare ground on any chilly morning, as we have experienced lately, I think of dad, and also of winter days on the ranch that are beyond my reach, but not forgotten.

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